From One Intern to the Next…

Image courtesy of Unsplah

Image courtesy of Unsplah

As my time at Curator comes to a close, I’ve been reflecting on some of the most important things I’ve learned here. Internships are hard work, but they can be incredibly rewarding if you give them your all. Here are the key takeaways I got from my internship, and some advice on how you can succeed in your own:

Be curious

The whole purpose of an internship is to learn, so never be afraid to ask questions. However, there is something to be said about figuring out the solution to a problem on your own. Be resourceful and genuinely curious, because you can learn a lot when you give yourself the opportunity to do so.

Put 100% effort into everything, even the small stuff

As an intern, sometimes you might feel like you’re being given all the work that no one else wants to do. But remember that being an intern is all about building upon your abilities. Show that you can succeed at the small stuff so that you are trusted with the bigger stuff. How you handle the less fun tasks is the truest reflection of your work ethic.

Be adaptive

Throughout your internship, but especially in the beginning, you might be asked to work on a project you have zero background knowledge on. When this happens, you have to be willing to learn. If you don’t do your own research on the front end of projects, your outcome won’t be very good. Friendly reminder that Google is your best friend!

Celebrate your successes

You’ll go through a bunch of different projects in a given day, and just like you might make a mistake here and there, you’ll also do some awesome things. When you’re told you did a good job, be excited about it! Be aware of both your weaknesses and your strengths so you know what to work on and what to be proud of.

And last but certainly not least…

Be detail oriented!!

If there was just one thing I took away from this internship, it’s that the details matter the most! Correct your typos, fix your formatting, and keep your projects organized. You will be dealing with a lot of moving parts throughout your internship, so keep it all straight so you never miss anything. Being detail oriented is THE key to success. 

Four Reasons Why You Should Accept an Internship Extension

Photo by  @k.rickkks

Photo by @k.rickkks

I started as an intern at Curator in December and once winter quarter ended, I decided to stay another three months. As this is an unpaid internship, I had a lot of friends asking why I would stay when I could have an easy final quarter before I graduate. I simply explained I wanted the extra experience.

Well, now that my time is coming to an end, I can say I’m glad I stayed.

My advice to all the interns out there is this: if you’re given the opportunity to extend your internship, whether you’re paid or not, you should definitely accept. Here’s why:

You get three extra months of experience. For college students, most PR internships have a timeframe of three months, which seems like a while but, in reality, is barely enough time to get your toes wet. Toward the end, you finally start catching a rhythm and making fewer mistakes on tasks that actually take a lot of practice to perfect, although they may seem easy. In this field, you’re expected to pay excellent attention to detail, which can take a great deal of practice for some people.

You get to take on bigger tasks. If you’ve been offered an extension on your internship, this is your opportunity to do more and learn new things. You’ve proven your ability to get things done and complete basic research and media monitoring efficiently, as well as shown eagerness to take on additional projects. In the second half of my internship, I spent the majority of my time on different projects that I found I really enjoyed. The opportunity to expand my work really solidified PR is the field I want to pursue post-graduation.

You get to know the team better. And they get to know you. Three months is not a lot of time to get to know your colleagues. The people in the company where you intern are helpful for networking or finding jobs down the road. Between every day office chatter and collaborative work on various account teams, you get to know one another on an individual basis, allowing for a better understanding of each others work style and ethics. As an intern, you learn and grow a lot – they get to witness that and if you use them as a reference later on, they’ll probably speak to your improvement and personality. Plus, they’ll also continue to give you valuable advice.

You get a better feel for the bigger picture. As an intern, you’re usually doing smaller projects and you only get to see one piece of the pie. When you stay at an agency for a longer period of time, you get to see the outcome of the projects you worked on three months prior. You get to see so many initiatives unfold and witness all that goes into it. That gives you a better idea of the types of things you might do later in your career.

Interning is such a valuable experience in general and I can definitely say I’m leaving Curator a better student and young professional than I was when I walked in. I’ve had a great experience in the last six months at Curator and I’m so sad to go!

April showers bring May flowers…and new interns!

Hi there! My name is Nicole Braman and I am a junior at the University of Washington majoring in Communications and minoring in Entrepreneurship. I am so excited to be a part of the Curator team as an intern for spring quarter to continue developing my skills and gaining experience in public relations.

Having always been a passionate writer and storyteller, I gravitated to PR as I began thinking about future career paths. My parents always advised me to find something I love and figure out how to do it every day. For me, PR is the field that will allow me to do just that! I love the idea of bridging the space between companies and consumers in order to build stronger connections and generate engaged, loyal consumer bases.

I first got a taste of PR as a publicity intern with the Los Angeles-based artist development firm, Planetary Group, where I contributed to the PR campaigns of a variety of musicians from multiple genres. From there, I was hooked. I became involved in just about any PR-related opportunity I could get my hands on through on-campus organizations as well as a corporate & donor relations internship with Make-A-Wish. Each of these experiences fueled my passion for PR and have luckily led me here to Curator!

As a Southern California native, I chose a college in Seattle to explore outside of the sun-filled bubble I call home. While many find me insane for making this move, I swear it doesn’t rain as much as people say. I likely appreciate the sunny days a little more than the average Seattleite though! I love being outside and experiencing new places, so naturally my favorite thing in the world is traveling. Next on my list of places to visit is Europe, so don’t be surprised if you find me planning and daydreaming about my adventures abroad! 

How My Internship Was Much More Than “Just Getting Coffee”

How My Internship Was Much More Than “Just Getting Coffee”

When I arrived in the office on the first day of my internship with Curator, I was ready to embrace the industry I was passionate about, but I also felt nervous. About to begin my junior year at the University of Washington, I had reached the point in my collegiate career where things tend to get a bit more “serious.”

Tips From a Curator Intern

Four months ago I came to Curator as a curious college student, eager to learn more about the world of public relations. Today, I am still a curious college student, but I am 100% more knowledgeable about the PR profession and all of the duties that come with the job.  I have learned essential skills during my time here, including compiling media lists, drafting press releases and creating coverage reports.  In addition, I discovered several small things important for being a successful PR intern that I’d like to share with anyone looking to take this step in their own career.

Review, Review, Review: You can never check over your work enough! It’s easy to make mistakes after working on projects for long periods of time, so it’s good to get into the habit of constantly reviewing your work and asking others to look over those assignments as well. 

Attention to Detail: Always pay attention to detail; even the smallest things can make a huge difference. As an intern especially, you should be careful of typos and grammatical errors to ensure all client documents are up to par.

Ask Questions: Interns can never really ask enough questions. There were plenty of times where I was unsure about tasks and the simplest thing to do was just to ask. It’s better to clarify any uncertainties rather than complete projects inaccurately. It’s also beneficial to dig into the different agency job positions by asking about the various accounts. This will help you better understand the exciting world of agency public relations.

Be Proactive: Take the initiative to communicate with team members to see if they need support with tasks. I found that being proactive and “checking-in” with others was the best way to stay busy and plus, it’s a great chance to show your capabilities and interest in the work.

Prioritizing: A big part of agency public relations is about keeping the clients happy and fulfilling their needs. Recognizing this means that you have to manage your time wisely to ensure that high priority client documents are completed efficiently and on time. At times, urgent events will come up unexpectedly, causing you to re-prioritize your projects. It’s important to be prepared to take on these unanticipated tasks.  

Social Media Rocks: At Curator, social media channels are constantly being used to engage with the public. While I was here, the Curator team created an entire social media campaign revolving around Chris Hansen and the Sonics Arena.  The campaign utilized Instagram to populate the Thank You Chris Hansen website by pulling in pictures of people thanking Chris Hansen, who shared their photos with the hashtag  #ThanksChrisHansen. The site generated a lot of excitement for Sonics fans and helped demonstrate the community’s gratitude. This campaign made me realize the significant influence of social media on the public and showed me how it can connect a community.

Today marks the last day of my internship at Curator and It’s been an exciting journey of ups and downs, with the only true “down” being the loss of our office pet fish (R.I.P. Cujo and Petunia).  I will miss everything from the creative people, to the morning coffee breaks and the Friday afternoon happy hours. Curator is an agency that knows how to balance hard work with fun and never fails to make time for a celebration or good laugh. I cannot begin to describe how thankful I am for the experience and I can honestly say that I am more skilled and prepared to continue with my professional endeavors. Thank you SO much, Curator! -- Johanna